In India, Aussies are underdogs, says Pup

Sports

Australia skipper Michael Clarke has seen several lows (initially) and plenty of highs (off late) as the captain of Australia's Test side. But nothing, in his own words, will be as challenging as leading the baggy greens on a tour to India. Calling it his toughest challenge yet, Clarke said that India a place Steve Waugh once termed his 'final frontier' is easily his biggest and most challenging assignment to date.

"Touring India is as tough a challenge as I've had in my career," Clarke said before leaving Sydney for India. "Every time I've been there on a Test tour it's been extremely difficult, hence the Australian team hasn't won that much over there. So it's a huge challenge, the players know that."

He, however, is still unsure about where Shane Watson will fit into the Australian batting order as he flew out for a four-Test series in India. Australian vice-captain Watson wants to return as an opener now that he's available only as a specialist batsman, but that would mean breaking up the partnership forged between David Warner and Ed Cowan in recent series against top-ranked South Africa and Sri Lanka.

"Ed, like Davey Warner, had a really good summer and put their hand up against the No.1 test team in the world, so I think it's a really positive sign that we've got so many options in our squad,'' Clarke said Tuesday as he prepared to leave for India.

Watson was injured for all but one Test against South Africa and was injured in the second of three Tests in the 3-0 series win over Sri Lanka. The injury-plagued Watson has said he won't bowl until he's fit enough to do it consistently without injury, and won't be considered as an allrounder in the series starting February 22 at Chennai.

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